Tianjin Development Holdings announced its second big investment in as many days when it said it would take a 51 per cent stake in a huge Tianjin residential project. The development, in the city's southwestern Xiqing district, comprises of one million square metres of gross floor area. Chairman Wang Guanghao declined to give the investment amount but said the company - the listed arm of the Tianjin municipal government - would partner another municipal government-backed firm to form a 51:49 joint venture. On Tuesday, Tianjin Development said it would spend $1.46 billion to redevelop the 42.5 kilometre eastern section of the Tianjin Eastern Outer Ring Road into a toll road. The section is 90 per cent owned by the company. Executive director Dong Ming said the Xiqing project, measuring about 717,000 square metres of land, would be turned into 9,500 'commodity' flats - flats for domestic buyers sold at market prices. The project would be developed in four phases over the next four to six years. Work on the first phase - involving about 270,000 square metres of land - is to start in the second quarter of this year with completion next year. The project could generate revenue of between 2.3 billion yuan (about HK$2.14 billion) and 2.6 billion yuan, based on the market price for commodity flats in the city of between 2,300 yuan and 2,600 yuan per square metre. Mr Wang said the project would not be subject to restrictions Beijing imposed on so-called 'affordable' housing, including a margin cap of about 3 per cent. Mr Dong said the Tianjin Eastern Outer Ring Road had daily traffic flow of more than 30,000 vehicles last year, up from more than 20,000 in 1996.